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Monday, 11 April 2016

Bread, Naturally

Remember the smell of home made bread? Coming home from school to fresh bread and molasses was a great treat. Mom always made great bread!

My grandmother O'Brien made wonderful bread, three buns in a round pan. Nan knew the piece of wood needed to bake the bread to perfection. The stove was stoked winter and summer, on the hottest days, because bread was such an essential part of the diet. The thick slices were eaten with molasses or jam. 

We didn't know what store-bought bread was when we were young and many of our friends were the same. The sandwiches we took to school were made of homemade bread. As we grew up, eventually some classmates had store-bought or baker's bread for sandwiches. That bread became a status symbol and we wanted it too. Baker's bread became the sandwich bread taken to school. 

When we married, neither Rick nor I made bread so baker's bread was the standard fare at our house. Over the years, I stopped eating bread for the most part, a few slices a month were the most I ever ate. Rick was the bread eater.

Then we discovered it! When his father was sick, Rick visited his parents. While he was gone, I put the loaf of bread in a cool place and forgot it. Six weeks later, I discovered the bread, just as fresh as the day it was bought. Anyone who makes bread knows how quickly it will dry out and go bad. What is added to the baker's bread to preserve it? Scary thought indeed!


                                                                    White bread with wheat germ

Thus began the quest for the perfect homemade bread. A new mixer with a dough hook and a variety of flour later and we have it. Three small loaves of bread per batch, made to order, rye, twelve grain, whole wheat or white with wheat germ. It is delicious and we know what is in it. Rick has perfected the process, a mix of ingredients, chemistry and skill or sometimes luck.

Maybe I will become a bread eater again.

18 comments:

  1. I read somewhere about a Twinkie cupcake that was found unwrapped after a year and it was still "fresh." I wonder just what is in that bread that made it not dry out. Same thing as the Twinkie, but you're right, it's scary. I eat very little bread myself but it's all locally made without preservatives. :-)

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    1. I saw that about the twinkie. Incredible!

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  2. When the girls were young I made bread every week, for the whole family. My mother and brother and the other children came, and we all did it together.

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    1. What a lovely tradition, Joanne. Our daily bread!

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  3. It looks an excellent loaf.

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  4. Sounds wonderful. I wasn't raised with homemade bread but I do remember the smell driving by the bakery. It would be great to have that smell in my house. I should try my hand at this.

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    1. It is easy, Barbara, says the woman who watches her husband make the bread.

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  5. "Man does not live on bread alone." But man, I sure could! Love it -- so many different wonderful kinds!

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    1. It can be so tasty! I love it with a glass of wine!

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  6. Your bread must be so tasty!!I grew up with rice but like bread too. I have not have made bread though.
    I would be happy if you made bread for me.Please!

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    1. My husband makes great bread! I would love to share some with you!

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  7. I did not grow up with the scent of baking bread. For a brief while, we tried a bread machine, but it seemed like more trouble than it was worth.

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    1. We have a bread machine but we are not lovers of its product either.

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  8. It looks like a perfect loaf. My husband also makes our own bread but he makes in a bread machine. It's scary to imagine the chemicals inside the store bought bread.

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    1. The preservatives in that bread can't be a good thing to consume.

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  9. I have two thin slices a week of G's homemade bread. I so agree with you.

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